"What are you doing against campylobacter?"
British consumer association Which? has asked the seven major supermarkets in an open letter what they are doing against the ‘scandalously’ high levels of campylobacter in the chicken they sell. The letter follows an earlier report by the Food Standards Agency with data about the level of the bug in chicken sold in each supermarket chain in the UK.
Which? chief executive Richard Lloyd says: "Six weeks on from the revelation of scandalously high levels of campylobacter in chicken, the supermarkets still haven't told consumers how they will tackle this potentially fatal bug. People need reassurance that supermarkets are doing everything they can to make chicken safe. The retailers must publish their plans and commit to action now."
Which? asks for 'a more visible and coordinated attempt by the sector to deal with the problem'. Actions could involve offering farmers incentives to reduce campylobacter levels in chicken, improving the controls in processing and the use of 'blast surface chilling' which freezes the outer skins of the chickens, leaving the meat raw inside. The organisation adds that its research shows that just a third of shoppers has heard of campylobacter while over 90% know about the risks of salmonella or E.coli. People are left in the dark about this bacteria which can have serious health implications, Which? thinks.
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